Monday, December 13, 2021

Rice Pudding, Eating Dessert from Granny Runt


A while back I came across a bunch of recipes of Grandma Walker’s that my cousins had shared with me, and thought it would be fun to make some of the foods in the collection. Most of the recipes are desserts and of the simple egg-sugar-flour-milk variety common to cooks without money or access to fancy ingredients. Some were familiar like rice pudding and bread pudding; others like vinegar pie were not. 

My Grandma Walker, also known as Granny Goodwitch or Granny Runt was an upbeat little bundle of energy who everyone loved. She grew up poor and married Clarence Walker a poor sharecropper. They started married life with a dozen chickens and lease on a small farm. Her recipes reflect the kind of treats foods that people make with just the basics available on a small subsistence farm. Some recipes showed up on our homestead table, but others, like Milk Pie, are completely new to me. 

The first recipe I tried from this collection is rice pudding which is something Mom used to make and I always enjoyed. Who doesn’t like something sweet with sugar-cinnamon, and raisins? It’s been ages since I had it, but I could remember the sweet cinnamon raisin flavors and the creamy texture. A great winter dessert that probably can be made from things you have in your pantry.

                                                Rice Pudding

3 C cooked rice 

3 eggs

1 pint whole milk

1 C cooked raisins if desired 

1h C sugar

1 tsp salt, flavor with vanilla, nutmeg or cinnamon 

Beat eggs, add sugar and milk, mix.

Stir in rice, raisins, and seasoning, bake until set at 350 in a 2-quart casserole dish.

I followed the recipe exactly except that I figured I didn’t need to cook the raisins; I just poured hot water on them so they’d soften and swell. As with many of Granny’s recipes, the instructions are vague and a little trial and error might be needed to get the texture and taste you like. When I made this I found the rice a little dry, but I think that was because I let the rice get a little too dry when I cooked it. The cinnamon makes a nice toasty color on the top and the eggs make a custardy texture. This is good hot or cold and even makes a tasty breakfast. 

 Next up, Milk Pie!